Luck for Egypt, strength for Cameroon


The Egyptians were made to fight hard for their win against Angola, but eventually ran out 2-1 winners.

Moawad says he is already eyeing the Ivory Coast in the semifinals - a rematch of the final encounter of the last tournament, which saw Egypt escape with a thrilling victory on penalties.

“We came here to defend our title and we're on the right path. The Ivory Coast have come to win the title and they want revenge but we'll prepare well for it.

Another member the victorious Pharoahs’ squad, Hosni Abd Rabou, was full of praise for Angola, labelling them the “toughest game so far”.

Angola coach Luis Oliveira Goncalves was unhappy following his side’s exit.

“Normally in football the best side wins, but today it was the opposite. Egypt were lucky, we created more chances, but weren’t able to take them,” he said.

“But my players shouldn’t have any shame. Egypt is a good, experienced team, and my side is young.”

Four-time champions Cameroon will face hosts Ghana in Thursday’s semifinal after an extra-time finish from Stephane Mbia which knocked Tunisia out of the tournament.

The midfielder struck twice including the extra-time winner as Cameroon beat Tunisia 3-2.

In an enthralling quarterfinal, Mbia swept the ball home from 12 metres after Joel Epalle headed on Geremi's thrown-in during the second minute of extra time.

Mbia had opened the scoring for Cameroon as they rushed to a two-goal lead in less than half an hour, Geremi adding the second from a free kick.

Chaouki Ben Saada pulled one back with another free kick before halftime and Yassine Chikhaoui equalised with 11 minutes left of normal time as the game headed into extra-time.

But within minutes of the restart of extra time, Mbia reacted swiftly in the area to Epalle's flick on, with a crisp finish inside the near post to reinstate Cameroon’s lead and a place in the last four.

Tunisian coach Roger Lemerre says Cameroon’s physical strength was decisive in helping the Indomitable Lions to victory.

“It’s not easy to play a team like Cameroon, they are physically very strong. The good physical preparation of our opponents was the main reason for the Cameroon win,” the Frenchman added.

Cameroon coach Otto Pfister emphasised his team's goal scoring prowess on a day when Samuel Eto'o failed to hit the target.

“We scored five against Zambia, three against Sudan and we have scored another three days today.

We have only two days to rest before the semifinal against Ghana but tonight we will sleep well, we have medical staff and we will be ready.”